Certified Investment Management Analyst® (CIMA®)

the peak international, technical portfolio construction certification program

 

Are you involved in any aspect of constructing multi-manager portfolios? If so, Certified investment Management Analyst - CIMA - certification offers an unrivalled opportunity to formally equip yourself with the knowledge, skill and expertise to build better quality investment portfolios – and be recognised for it.

CIMA certification is the peak, international technical portfolio construction certification program designed for investment management analysts - that is, those involved in any aspect of constructing multi-manager portfolios, whether practitioner or advocate. There are already more than 8,000 CIMA certificants globally.

Stand for more - more knowledge, skill and expertise - with CIMA certification.

Graham Rich, Managing Partner & Dean

Who should undertake CIMA certification?

CIMA certification fits uniquely in the clear and uncluttered space between the CFA program – which is perhaps best suited to those who design portfolios of individual securities – and the CFP program – which is perhaps best suited to those who give broad-based financial planning advice. In other words, CIMA certification is specialised to the space between CFA and CFP, and is ideally suited to investment management analysts - that is, those involved in any aspect of constructing multi-manager portfolios, whether practitioner or advocate.

For Practitioner investment management analysts:

  • investment advisers, researchers/analysts and portfolio managers from private wealth management companies;

  • fund analysts and asset consultants from fund research and fund investment consulting firms;

  • fund researchers/analysts and portfolio managers from multi-manager funds management, superannuation, and investment platform companies

For Advocate investment management analysts:

  • funds management professionals who work with practitioner investment management analysts.

A quick introduction

CIMA certification is the peak, international technical portfolio construction certification program designed for investment management analysts - that is, those involved in any aspect of constructing multi-manager portfolios, whether practitioner or advocate. There are already more than 8,000 CIMA certificants globally.

Today more than ever, quality investment portfolio construction requires a commitment to best practice continuing education and certification, because the investment world is ever changing and – entirely reasonably – individual investors are expecting and relying on superior professional standards to be met by those who design, build and manage their investment portfolios, to help them achieve their life goals and financial wellbeing.

Certification is the formal process of recognising an individual's successful demonstration of superior knowledge and competence in a validated and specific best-practice body of knowledge and curriculum. Candidates must meet best-practice ethical standards, have a minimum amount of relevant experience, study for and pass formal exams, and commit to a code of professional responsibility to reach certification – and then certificants must regularly recertify by showing that they have met continuing ethical and accredited education standards.

That's why CIMA certficants stand for more - more knowledge, more skill, more expertise - when it comes to designing, building and managing multi-manager portfolios.
 

Who's involved?

In Australia and New Zealand, CIMA certification and accredited continuing education is managed and delivered by Portfolio Construction Forum, the specialist, independent investment continuing education and certification service.

The CIMA certification mark is owned by the Investments and Wealth InstituteTM, the Denver USA-based international professional association, advanced education provider, and certification board for financial advisers, investment consultants, and wealth managers.

CIMA certificants in Australia and NZ are members of the CIMA Society of Australia, an affiliate of the Institute. Portfolio Construction Forum is CIMA Society's strategic partner in the management and delivery of CIMA certification and accredited continuing education services.


Why become a CIMA certificant? (1.50 min)
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Graham Rich, Managing Partner & Dean, Portfolio Construction Forum


The history of CIMA certification in Australia (3.00 min)
In this short video, Ron Bird - Professor at the University of Technology Sydney and course director of a key education component of the CIMA certification program since inception in Australia in 2001 - explains the genesis of the CIMA program in Australia.


And in this next short video, Professor Bird explains why and how he drove the introduction into Australia of the Investment Management Consultants Association (the precursor to the CIMA Society of Australia).


ISO accreditation

CIMA certification has earned third-party accreditation by American National Standards Institute (ANSI). This distinguishes CIMA certification as the only financial services certification in the USA to meet international standards (ISO 17024) for personnel certification.

To achieve accreditation, the CIMA certification policies and procedures needed to demonstrate that the program:

  • is open and transparent;

  • is fair, objective, and impartial;

  • has appeals procedures for complaints;

  • is supported by an organisation with sound management systems;

  • has a decision-making body that is autonomous and is without undue influence by special interests; and,

  • the process consistently distinguishes those who meet a level of competency and skills as an investment management professional from those who do not.

The CIMA curriculum covers five core knowledge domains...

1. Fundamentals
Statistics & Methods; Applied Finance & Economics; Global Capital Markets History & Valuation

2. Investments
Investment Vehicles; Equity; Fixed Income; Alternative  Assets; Options/Futures/Other derivatives; Real Assets

3. Portfolio Theory and Behavioural Finance
Portfolio Theories & Models; Behavioral Finance Theory; Investment Philosophies & Styles; Tools & Strategies

4. Risk and Return
Attributes of Risk; Risk Measurements; Performance Measurement and Attribution

5. Portfolio Construction and Consulting Process
Code of Professional Responsibility; Client Discovery; Investment Policy; Portfolio Construction; Manager  Search, Selection, and Monitoring; Portfolio Review and Revisions

More about the CIMA curriculum

All CIMA candidates globally complete the same process including five key steps...

1. Enrol - In Australia and NZ, Portfolio Construction Forum manages candidates through the process.

2. Ethics – disclose any potential or real violations of  the Institute’s Code of Professional Responsibility and successfully complete background checks.

3. Education – successfully complete a local, specialist  executive education program. In Australia and NZ, this is the blended online and residential Investment Management Analyst Course (IMAC), culminating in a four-hour exam. It is delivered by Portfolio Construction Forum's Investment Management Research Program, in collaboration with selected academic faculty of leading Australian university business schools, independent consultants and experienced practitioners.

4. Examination – successfully complete the online, five-hour Certification Exam.

5. Experience – exhibit at least three years of relevant  experience in financial services.

More about how to become a CIMA certificant